Children’s Lying - II

Children’s Lying - II

The most common type of lie:

Surveys show that the most common type of lie amongst children is the one used as a protective measure, with seventy percent (70%) of the children who lie doing it, while ten percent (10%) do it due to misconceptions and twenty percent (20%) due to revenge.

The cure:

Lying is a characteristic that a child gains and learns as he grows up; thus, parents must give great importance to the issue of raising their children to be truthful and honest and must also be serious about finding a cure and a solution for lying amongst their children lest it might grow to become a part of their character which they cannot rid them of. Some of the important methods of treating the phenomenon of lying are the following:

First: Understanding the reasons behind the child’s lying and categorizing the type of lying he does, because the way to deal with each is different.

Second: Bearing in mind the age of the child, especially because dealing with the type due to imagination or due to misconception is different than with the type when they try to achieve an objective or take revenge, for example.

Third: Trying to fulfil the needs of the child, whether physical, emotional or psychological.

Fourth: Being tolerant with children and building a friendly relationship with them, because this makes them feel secure with their parents so they will not have to resort to lying. On the other hand, in families in which the parents are harsh and threatening, the children are confused and disturbed and thus resort to lying.

Fifth: Avoiding punishment when the child tells the truth and forgiving him, or at least reducing the punishment, in order to get the child used to telling the truth, because if he tells the truth and still gets punished, then he will see no benefit in it and will resort to lying as an attempt to avoid punishment.

Sixth: Refraining from laughing when the child lies, because the child may look funny in certain situations when he lies, but if parents laugh, the child will think that lying is something acceptable and even pleasing and he will repeat it in order to entertain his parents.

Seventh: Enlightening the child of the evil consequences of lying, and informing him that Allah has cursed liars in the Quran and that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) has informed us that it is one of the qualities of hypocrites, and that it leads to immorality.

Eighth: Warning the child when he lies and being firm with him when necessary, while keeping in mind the reason for his lying. One may have to punish the child because, otherwise, it might become a characteristic which he cannot get rid of later.

Ninth: Parents setting a good example for children by refraining from lying in front of them and not commanding them to lie. What is more important is that parents should not lie to the child himself, because the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) prohibited that, as in the narration of ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Aamir  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  him who said: “Once, when I was a child, the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) was at our home. I was outside playing and my mother called out: ‘O ‘Abdullah, come here and I will give you something!’ The Messenger  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) asked: 'What do you wish to give him?' She replied: ‘Dates.’ He  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: 'If you had not intended to give him anything, then it would have been recorded against you as a lie.'” [Ahmad and Abu Daawood]

Tenth: Fulfilling the promises made to the child because the child may not understand the excuse of the parents for not fulfilling it and will consider it as lying. ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  him said: “Beware of telling false tales, because lying is not accepted in seriousness or as a joke, and let not one of you promise his child something and not fulfil it.

Eleventh: Treating children equally.

Twelfth: Building self-confidence in the child.

Children’s Lying - I

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